Students are Known, Cared, and Advocated For

Counseling services are an integral part of Singapore American School. Counselors take a proactive, child-centered, and developmental approach in working with students, parents, and teachers. Our counselors teach character education lessons, provide individual and family counseling, facilitate small group workshops for students, lead parent coffees, conduct entry and exit family transitional programs, and coordinate student services in the school.

Elementary School Counseling

The elementary school counseling program is committed to promoting the development of responsible global citizens by nurturing the academic, social, and emotional growth of all students.


The elementary school counselors at Singapore American School believe:

  • All students can be successful when provided support appropriate to their individual needs
  • The school counselor’s role is to advocate for every student
  • Our role is to promote and inspire a healthy well-balanced lifestyle
  • In celebrating diversity and recognizing the dignity and self worth of each student
  • Children in the elementary years are in stages of rapid growth and development and require unique academic, social and emotional support
  • Self advocacy and resiliency are skills that can be taught and nurtured

SAS Character Traits


Being Responsible means that others can depend on you. Being responsible means to do something well and to the best of your ability. Being responsible is being willing to be accountable for what you do or do not do.

You are practicing responsibility when you:

  • focus on your own part, not on someone else's
  • admit mistakes without making excuses


Respect is an attitude of honoring people and caring about their rights. Being respectful is seen in the way we treat others, the way we speak and the way we treat belongings. Respect includes honoring the rules of your family and your school.

You are practicing respect when you:

  • Treat everyone the way you want to be treated
  • Honor the rules of your family, school and country


Honesty is being sincere, open, trustworthy, and truthful. When people are honest they can be relied on not to lie, cheat, or steal. Honesty means not exaggerating something just to impress others.

You are practicing honesty when you:

  • say what you mean and mean what you say
  • admit your mistakes
  • refuse to cheat, steal or lie


Being compassionate is understanding and caring about someone and wanting to help.

You are practicing compassion when you:

  • notice someone is hurting and needs a friend
  • help people and animals in need


Fairness is treating others the way you want to be treated. Fairness is the Golden Rule.

You are practicing fairness when you:

  • play by the rules
  • treat people right
  • consider others and what they might want or need

Information taken from The Family Virtues Guide by Linda Kavelin Popov.

Student Workshops

Student workshops and similar groups are conducted on an as-needs basis throughout the school year.


This workshop teaches students skills about friendship. We learn what it means to be a good friend, how to make and keep friends and how to handle many different scenarios through fun activities and games. We have short group discussions followed by a lot of playing in order for students to practice what we’ve learned. We observe their playing and give them feedback on different choices that were made. Together we discuss what worked and what didn’t.

This group is ideal for new students who are still transitioning and trying to make new friends. It is also helpful for those students who have difficulty maintaining friendships or those who would simply like to make new friends!


This workshop focuses on anger management. We learn about what makes us angry and how to identify those triggers early. We learn skills to ensure that we stay in control and deal with our anger appropriately. Students understand that it’s okay to get angry but it’s not okay to loose control.

This group is ideal for students who find it difficult to control themselves when they are angry or those who keep anger inside and don’t deal with it at all.


This workshop teaches students about self-awareness. Students learn skills to become more aware of their surroundings and how their behavior affects others. We practice problem solving and thinking through actions before acting.

This group is ideal for students who are impulsive and may not always be aware or “tuned in” to the way their behavior and choices affect others and themselves.


These workshops are offered twice a year (November and April) in the form of one parent coffee and two student meetings. The counselors provide a presentation for each group addressing the many issues associated with moving. Discussions about “third culture kids” and important knowledge about how to prepare for the move, leave your present residence, and enter your new one are all shared to help support families in making a successful transition.


We believe a positive, happy recess experience is essential to classroom success. Thus, the Lunch Bunch room, an indoor recess room, serves as a place where any third, fourth, or fifth grade student can go to connect, make friends, and have fun.

The Lunch Bunch room is stocked with games, crafts, as well as a foosball and air hockey table. The room has a relaxed, comfortable setting with couches and floor pillows that allows students to socialize and interact. This recess room is supervised by staff who ensure that the students are matched up and connected with other students for a fun recess experience.

The Lunch Bunch room is located across from the elementary office B and is open five days a week during lunch recess.

Meet the Elementary School Counselors

Middle School Counseling

The middle school years are noted for the excitement, discoveries, and challenges that many changes bring on. An 11-year-old who enters grade six is often a very different person when leaving as a 13-year-old at the end of grade eight. Because of these changes, our counseling services are central to the middle school experience. As counselors and a school psychologist, we assist students, parents, and teachers with a developmentally appropriate and child centered approach. We are experienced with the social, emotional, and educational needs of children during the middle school years, and thrive on our work.

A full-time psychologist is a part of the middle school special services team. Services include, but aren't limited to, individualized psycho-educational assessments and academic/behavioral screenings requested by student review teams or administrators, providing inservice programs for parents/staff, crisis management as part of a school-wide team, and consultation to staff and parents.

Meet the Middle School Counselors

High School Personal and Academics Counseling

The SAS Personal and Academic Counseling Department is staffed with five full time counselors and a Dean of Student Life who has responsibility for a smaller number of students. All high school counselors provide guidance and support to students and families about issues including study habits, friendships and healthy relationships. We also support students through periods of stress and anxiety, and other mental health concerns.

Meet the Personal and Academic Counselors

Sue Nesbitt
  • Dean of Student Life
  • PAC Counseling Profiles
Lisa Ball
  • Department Chair
  • Personal Academic Counselor
  • PAC Counseling Profiles
  • Story
Jeff Devens, Ph.D.
  • High School Psychologist (Social/Emotional)
  • Personal Academic Counselor
  • PAC Counseling Profiles
  • Story
Joon Myong
  • Personal Academic Counselor
  • PAC Counseling Profiles

High School College Counseling

The college counselors at SAS have many years of experience and constantly keep up to date with changes and trends in the college admissions world. As such, they serve as resources who can answer or find answers to any question that may come up in the application process. The college counselors are here to help each student succeed in the journey to college.

We have compiled some of our favorite resources below to help students understand the application process.

Meet the College Counselors